With massive, and rapid strides taking place in technology, we are heading into a world of intelligent automation. This new world will not only benefit us in many ways, it will also open up unusual challenges of how people gain employment, because the jobs of tomorrow will be very different to the ones we have today. Preparing for this change has to begin during a child’s early years in order to ingrain the competencies needed for jobs of the future.
Strides in technology have also led to a more globalised, interconnected world. This has brought about an increase in migration and as a result, the growth of larger international communities of people from different social, cultural and racial backgrounds. Additionally, a growing middle class in several developing countries is driving a strong demand from families who wish their children to benefit from a world-class international education.
Combined, these scenarios mean our students must be prepared to collaborate and compete with peers globally. They must develop flexibility, resilience and the ability to thrive in a multicultural, multilingual setting and they must see themselves as global citizens from an early age. So how can educators today prepare students for what tomorrow will bring?
Schools must realise they cannot continue to operate solely as transmitters of knowledge. At Nord Anglia Education, we share international best practice across our schools to provide personalised learning experiences for all our students. Teachers tailor their approach to suit the needs of each individual child, enabling them to not only excel academically, but guide them to develop cognitive abilities that will make them fit for the future. This means the cultivation of both hard and soft skill sets ranging from coding and interpreting big data, to cultural competence, empathy, collaboration and the ability to communicate confidently.
As a family of schools comprising over 50,000 students from 56 schools in 26 countries, NAE represents a truly globalised student body. Our unique position has enabled us to enhance the globally-respected curricula we offer through collaborations with some of the world’s best organisations, exposing students to extraordinary, creative and truly cutting-edge learning experiences and opportunities.
Through our collaboration with The Juilliard School, one of the world’s most renowned performing arts conservatories, we have responded to a call for greater cultural competency, creative problem-solving skills and the ability to communicate confidently. By delivering an enriched learning experience through state-of-the-art keyboard labs and inspirational live performances from visiting Juilliard artist faculty to our schools, we help students to fall in love with the arts, and channel their emotions to express themselves authentically and confidently in all aspects of life.
Through our collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the world’s number one university according to QS Rankings, we revolutionised our approach to STEAM learning to encourage our students to be acutely aware and curious about the world around them and seek new and innovative ways to solve real world problems. MIT’s mens et manus (mind and hand) motto moves their provision of learning away from the artificial silos of single subject teaching. Instead, students are exposed and influenced by the world’s top minds where they can learn to experiment and push their boundaries to succeed in an increasingly competitive environment — a learning philosophy which we incorporate into our approach to integrated learning in our schools.
Our collaboration with UNICEF and our global expeditions programme go a long way to bolster and empower our students to manifest a mature, globalised mind-set and to actually make a difference in their world. More than anything, we want our students to be socially conscious human beings, to develop compassion and care about the world around them and the people in it.
Chenoa and Sierra saw first-hand the positive impact their invention made to the welfare of an entire community. They were also introduced to the concept of social enterprise, where by doing good individually and collectively, we can build a sustainable, safer, and more prosperous planet for all humanity. Sabrina, one of our four students from BSB, Shunyi selected to speak at the UN, had a rare chance to persuade the hearts and minds of world leaders by expressing her social concerns at the highest possible level — an inspirational opportunity that helped earn her a conditional offer to study at Cambridge.
The Greek philosopher Aristotle said: “The things we have to learn before we do them, we learn by doing them”. I can’t help but think it’s the experience and skills gained in moments like these that will ultimately shape our students for a bright future, and instil the belief they can achieve more than they ever thought possible.